In the biggest single cash seizure of the new currency, an Income Tax raid on the premises of two engineers and two contractors in Bengaluru found a whopping Rs 5.7 crore of cash, all in the recently-introduced Rs 2000 notes.
The Income Tax department said it detected total unaccounted income worth Rs 152 crore.
"Total admission of unaccounted income by the group stands at Rs 152 crore. Investigations are on," they said.
They added the department also recovered 7 kg bullion and jewellery weighing 9 kg, worth Rs 5 crore, after these operations.
"About 90 lakh has been found in the old demonetised currency. In addition, several property documents were also found and seized," they said.
The major haul was from a posh flat of Public Works Department engineer SC Jayachandra at upscale Sanjaynagar in the city's northwest suburb.
The sleuths also attached a Lamborghini and Porsche limousines of Jayachandra, parked in the basement of his multi-storey apartment.
The officials also seized some notes of Rs 100, demonetised notes of Rs 500 and a few gold biscuits during the operation, it said, adding the department had to call in note counting machines and additional staff to ascertain the value of the cash.
Several Identity cards of various individuals were also found at the scene.
A team of over 50 I-T sleuths and police personnel had launched operations yesterday and searched premises in Bengaluru, Chennai and Erode (Tamil Nadu).
Two days back, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) had seized Rs 10 lakh cash in new notes of Rs 2000 from the premises of a Kolkata-based doctor.
ED had conducted nationwide search operations yesterday at 40 locations and seized about Rs 1 crore in new notes.
What had surprised the tax authorities is the sheer amount of new currency stashed by these individuals at a time when new notes are not available to the common men who are queuing up to withdraw small amounts from their accounts.
"This is the highest seizure of the new currency in the country post the currency ban on November 8. Some entry operators and bankers in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu are under the scanner. Such volume of new currency cannot be obtained without connivance of bank officials," a senior I-T department official said.
Meanwhile Karnataka Home Minister has announced the government's decision to suspend the 2 state government officers.
Dr G Parameshwara made the announcement in the legislative council following uproar by the opposition demanding probe into the issue. "The government has decided to suspend C S Jayachandra and Chikkarayappa after Income Tax department found unaccounted cash with them. They will remain suspended until they are given a clean chit", said the Home Minister.